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I learnt so much from you.

You taught me how to love like I’ve never loved before. You taught me how to cry more than I’ve ever cried before. You taught me how to voice my opinions, to argue, to debate. You taught me to be a feminist, even though you call yourself anything but. You taught me to strive to make other people see how brightly I shine.

What you didn’t teach me was how to not take crap from guys like you again. You crept into my life, condemning the abuses of my past, whilst carelessly treating me the same. You helped me to be open and honest about each and every emotion, without ever reflecting for a moment on yours. I basked in your privilege and boldness, empowered by your strength and directness. But under the veneer of truthfulness, you withdrew into lies, changing from a man I thought was beautiful, to someone so capable of such cruelty.

You taught me that relationships aren’t easy; I’ve never worked as hard as I did when I tried to understand you. But after all of that, when it came to it, you didn’t want to put in the work. You showed me that those who seem giving can be selfish, those who seem well-mannered can be disrespectful, and those who seem the warmest can be the most cold.

You poured your early impression of my personality into a cast projected from your dysfunctional relationships, and your insecurities made you ashamed of the false impression that came out of the mould. You taught me to convince myself that I was at fault, to swallow my tears and pretend you didn’t hurt me. With you, I put up with more than I ever thought possible. I learnt to adjust my expectations, and to augment my aspirations and dreams. I convinced myself that I wanted what you wanted.

After all of this, I think that perhaps my raw emotion isn’t something that you can understand. In a testament to how much I tried, my heartbreak was painfully recorded in the data of my Fitbit.

You told me that I was oppressing you, but you were wrong. You don’t know how to be happy, only to pretend. I thought I was bathing in your phosphorescence, inspired and illuminated by you. But I was wrong.

In the beginning, you were so encouraging and uplifting, but in the end you were pulling me down.